David Coulthard believes that the only way the British Grand Prix will survive is if it becomes more commercial. Bernie Ecclestone has criticised the Silverstone circuit several times in the past and although it has gone through a series of improvements in the last few years including a better road network in the surrounding area, there are still plenty of changes that could be made.
The BRDC, who are the circuit’s owners, are hoping a £25 million plan will be approved at an EGM at the end of the month and that this will then lead to a new contract to host the race after 2009.
“I personally don’t see anything wrong with the Silverstone circuit and facilities,” Coulthard explained. “How changing the press room, providing you with leather-clad seats and better tea and coffee-making facilities, makes for a better Grand Prix is beyond me. We race in Brazil, Canada and lots of places that are real dumps compared to Silverstong. But we go there and say, ‘oh, it’s fantastic to be in Montreal!’ when there are things that ensure that’s not the case.
“Yet it’s not in fear of being dropped from the calendar is it? Let’s just hope the British Grand Prix continues. If it doesn’t, then it will be for commercial reasons. Of course I would like to not see a calendar without the British Grand Prix on it, but I can imagine it. In this business, anything is possible, especially with all the pressures for people to buy into the F1 franchise. But Bernie is running a business and what part does emotion play in business?”